Multiple stone alignment and associated cairns west of Glasscombe Upper Plantation
- Heritage Category:
- Scheduled Monument
- List Entry Number:
- Date first listed:
- Date of most recent amendment:
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This copy shows the entry on 22-Sep-2021 at 08:37:15.
The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.
- South Hams (District Authority)
- National Park:
- National Grid Reference:
- SX 66607 61169
Reasons for Designation
Dartmoor is the largest expanse of open moorland in Southern Britain and because of exceptional conditions of preservation, it is also one of the most complete examples of an upland relict landscape in the whole country. The great wealth and diversity of archaeological remains provides direct evidence for human exploitation of the Moor from the early prehistoric period onwards. The well-preserved and often visible relationship between settlement sites, major land boundaries, trackways, ceremonial and funerary monuments as well as later industrial remains gives significant insights into successive changes in the pattern of land use through time. Stone alignments provide rare evidence of ceremonial or ritual practices on the Moor during the Late Neolithic and Bronze Age. The complex of alignments near Glasscombe Upper Plantation is unusual and particularly significant as it is connected with a group of cairns and the remains of cairns (retaining kerbs) at the north-eastern end and with a further complex of stone settings and cairns on the far bank of the East Glaze Brook. There are also several other settlements and funerary monuments in the vicinity.
Stone alignments or stone rows consist of upright stones set in a single
line or in two or more parallel lines, up to several hundred metres in
length. They frequently lead to burial monuments such as small cairns, cists
and barrows and are therefore thought to have had a ceremonial function. The
70 or so examples known on Dartmoor were probably constructed in the Late
Neolithic period (around 2500 BC)
This complex of multiple stone alignments, cairns and remains of cairns lies
on the west bank of the East Glaze Brook north-west of Glasscombe Upper
Plantation. The stone rows follow the main contour and are aligned roughly
north-east/south-west, with five cairns at the northern end. There are
seven, or possibly eight rows, the possible eighth being represented by two
stones 25m apart between the two triple rows and aligned with the centre of
their terminal cairn. The northernmost row is single and is 157m in length,
with stones standing up to 0.64m in height. The spacing between stones is
very irregular, the terminal cairn at the north end is 8m in diameter and
0.5m in height. There are two shorter triple rows south of it, both
terminating at the north-eastern end at a cairn retaining kerb, the first
triple row is 7.8m in length and the southernmost is 66m in length and again
the spacings are irregular. This and the variation in length may be due to
robbing for the newtake. The cairn retaining kerb at the north end of the
triple rows is a semi-circle 14m in diameter, with five stones up to 0.5m in
height. Two sets of concentric rings of stones (retaining kerbs) at the
northern end are 14m and 23m in diameter. The adjacent cairn is 8m in
diameter and 0.5m in height.
MAP EXTRACT The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract. It includes a 2 metre boundary around the archaeological features, considered to be essential for the monument's support and preservation.
The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.
- Legacy System number:
- Legacy System:
Books and journals
Davidson, C J, Seabrook, R A G, 'Proc. Devon Arch. Soc.' in Stone Rings on South East Dartmoor, , Vol. 31, (1973), 26
Grinsell, L V, 'Devon Archaeological Society Proceedings' in Dartmoor Barrows, , Vol. 36, (1978), 171
Robinson, R, Greeves, T A P, 'Proc Devon Arch Soc' in Two unrecorded prehistoric multiple stone rings, Glasscombe, , Vol. 39, (1981), 33-36
Devon County SMR SX66SE-003,
Devon County SMR SX66SE-350,
This monument is scheduled under the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979 as amended as it appears to the Secretary of State to be of national importance. This entry is a copy, the original is held by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport.
End of official listing